I would like to show the function keys when using the terminal app. However, when I use system preferences to try to set this up in Keyboard Shortcuts, the Terminal app is not selectable.


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1 Answer 1


The reason for this is that Apple doesn't seem to treat its Terminal app in the same way as other apps in terms of permanently setting Functions keys in the Touch Bar. Instead, you need to follow these steps:

  1. Launch the Terminal app
  2. Go to View > Customize Touch Bar
  3. Drag the Function keys onto the Touch Bar
  4. Click Done

Another option is to use another app as your terminal (such as iTerm2) and follow the usual steps for permanently setting the Function keys on the Touch Bar.

Based on your screenshots, it seems you know the steps for doing this, but just to be sure and for the benefit of others:

  1. Go to Apple > System Preferences
  2. Select the Keyboard preference pane
  3. Click on the Shortcuts tab
  4. In the left sidebar, select the Function Keys option
  5. On the right-hand side click on the plus + button
  6. Search for the app you want to use (e.g. iTerm2)
  7. Add the app

Now, whenever you are using the app, the Touch Bar should display all the function keys.

  • Note that Terminal offers several choices for which function keys to show, and they can be used in combination with other Touch Bar items, arranged in the order you want. The function keys will scroll if there isn't enough room, which allows for showing up to all 24 function keys (PF1-PF4, F1-F20). You can also combine “VT100 (PF1-PF4)” and “VT220 Extras (F13-F20)” together, side-by-side, to provide all the additional function keys not available by pressing Fn (which provides F1-F12). They can fit without scrolling if you customize the Control Strip to make it shorter.
    – Chris Page
    Sep 18, 2017 at 0:06
  • Thanks @ChrisPage for mentioning this. :) Very useful info!
    – Monomeeth
    Sep 21, 2017 at 4:51

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